Nepal photography tour

Nepal

NEPAL PHOTOGRAPHY TOURS

Few places on earth fascinate and capture the imagination more than Nepal. This vibrant, breathtaking country offers a rich canvas on which to further develop your passion for photography – on our 10-day Nepal Photography Tour.

With daytime temperatures averaging 26c, its the perfect time of year to escape to the Himalayas and immerse yourself in the spectacular landscapes of Pokhara and Kathmandu – taking time to shoot portraits of returning Everest sherpas, go trekking with a Gurkha, explore the myriad medieval streets of Thamel, plus tour the lush forests of Chitwan National Park, capturing tigers, leopards and rare dolphins.

Experience unforgettable nights in authentic Nepali hideaways, mountainview retreats and boutique, luxury hotels, using every imaginable mode of transport, from elephant to rickshaws to good old-fashioned hiking boots.

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“These guys have got it right. Tuition seems effortless, even the most hardened luddite of the group grasped each of the lessons straight away. Before you know it, you realise that you have the ability to take any photographs in any situation. And that feels good. Throw in top hospitality and plenty of socialising makes this two-thumbs up”.

HORDALAND FOLKEBLAD

Highlights.

Nepal is a colorful jumble of pagoda-topped temples, ornate religious monuments, carved wooden Newari architecture, chaotic streets, and majestic mountains. The country is home to ten UNESCO World Heritage Sites and is bursting at the seams with cultural and natural wonders. A few monuments are still under repair, but their stories of rival kingdoms, mythical deities, and spiritual devotion are unchanged.

The Kathmandu Valley includes the ancient cities of Kathmandu, Patan, and Bhaktapur, each with its own Durbar Square of courtyards, royal palaces, and temples from the 12th to 18th centuries. Dotted around this cultural collage are superlative religious sites— like Boudhnath, a giant white dome that is Nepal’s largest stupa and center of Tibetan Buddhism. Nestled in a lush valley northwest of Kathmandu, Pokhara lulls with lakeside charm and a jagged, snowcapped Annapurna backdrop. Further south, the steamy subtropics of southern Nepal cradle Chitwan National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site that’s home to 68 species of mammals, 544 species of birds, and 556 species of reptiles and amphibians.

The best thing about Nepal is there’s always another adventure.

Craft dusk vistas of Boudhnath stupa, the holiest Tibetan Buddhist temple outside Tibet.
Attend a private portrait shoot of the Kumari, a living goddess in the ancient royal city of Patan – not available to tourists.
Shoot the endless ranges of the snowcapped Himalayas, from 20,000 feet.
Snap tigers from the back of a 4×4 Landrover in Chitwan National Park.
Try out intimate portraits of the Tharu tribe, in the local long house.
Capture the Annapurna region, from a walk designed for Prince Charles.
Photograph Gurkhas and Everest summiteers on private shoots.
Document the incredible architecture of Kathmandu, Patan and Bhaktapur

Nepal Photography Tour Itinerary.

Fresh off the overnight flight, we’ll whisk you over to our luxe bolthole minutes from the airport – The Hyatt Regency – and chance to have welcome drinkies with the team who’ll be escorting you on your 10-day Nepal Photography Tour.

After a restful nights sleep, we’ll dive right into the basics of photography, getting you up to speed with that tricky looking (but not really when you know how) digital SLR, then take you to the magical Boudhnath stupa, steps from the hotel.

Here, we’ll take the first of many spectacular shots (supported at all times by our attentive tutors), then get a private blessing in a 16th century temple overlooking the stupa, before sunset cocktails with a dramatic view of the Himalayas.

Next morning, we’re up early to take an optional mountain flight over the snowcapped Himalayas – chance to fly directly over Everest in planes with oversized windows; the views are out of this world. Back at base, we’ll have a look through some of the most famous images taken in Nepal, and analyse some of the styles so we can try out for ourselves.

We’ll also equip you with a handful of techniques to make your images really stand out, then head to the medieval city of Patan, enjoying a lunch at a local family house. We’ll then tour the ornate streets of this city, getting 1-on-1 guidance from our pros, before a private photoshoot with the Kumari, a living goddess, normally not available tourists. Later, we’ll review our images poolside under the stars; our team giving you individual feedback on your best of the day.

More spectacular views today as we head south to Royal Chitwan National Park, which covers almost a 1000 sq. kilometres of lowland Nepal. We’re here to safari – where our team will give you step-by-step guidance on the techniques of shooting killer wildlife photography. The park is one of the last refuges of the endangered one-horn Rhino, and there are sizable populations of tigers, leopards and rare Gangetic dolphins. Up early to catch the morning rays, we’ll load our kit onto our own personal elephant and take a tour through sal forest, water marshes and rippling grasslands to hunt some shots.

Later, we’ll head out in 4×4 Landrovers to explore deeper into the jungle; chance to shoot some Tigers. Later, we’ll visit the Tharu – people of the forest indigenous to the region. We’ll have drinks in a Badaghar – ‘the long house’ – chance to meet –and shoot – an ancient community first hand. Later, we’ll review our best images of the day under myriad shooting stars (we counted 40 last time!).

Today, we head north to spectacular Pokhara, to our boutique retreat with picture perfect mountain views, and a millpond calm lake on which to observe them – all in glorious sunshine. Here we’ll reveal the techniques of amazing landscape photography – running through the masters who’ve defined the genre, then deconstructing what makes a landscape great. Armed with these new found skills, we’ll take a trip the Peace Pagoda, the perfect spot to shoot the afternoon light over the Annapurna range, before taking a private row boat across the lake and our own private outdoor BBQ.

Next morning, we’ll climb up to Sarangkot, capturing the sunrise over the Himalayas – panoramic views are quite spectacular from here. Back in Pokhara, we’l meet up for lunch with some Gurkhas, fearsome Nepalese warriors with incredible tales to tell. You’ll even get chance to have a private photoshoot by the lake afterwards.

Later, we’ll have tea at the exclusive Tiger Mountain resort, then take the easy Royal Trek, designed for Prince Charles, where we’ll get incredible sunset views of the Annapurna region. Great pictures are guaranteed.

Next morning, we’ll say farewell to unique Pokhara and board our flight back to Kathmandu, and explore the ancient royal district, trying out some street photography in the myriad backstreets. We’ll meet up with some former Everest Summiteers over lunch, then a private portrait photoshoot with them – before capturing the ancient atmosphere of this timeless city as light falls. Later, we’ll review our images as a group, and get individual feedback on your emerging style and skills.

On our final full day in Nepal, we’ll prepare you to shoot your final piece of work, in the magical city of Bhaktapur. We’ll give you 1-on-1 feedback, then help you design, prepare and shoot a final group of killer images for review in our pop-up exhibition later that night. The rest of the day is yours to explore the intricate and beautiful streets of this kingdom – come evening, we’ll dine outside in our final night celebration dinner, presenting our collection of images, then celebrate in style in Babar Mahal, where only the most well-to-do Nepalese hang out.

Next morning, we’ll have our final 1-on-1’s, where our tutors will give you personal feedback on your style and where to next take your photography, before boarding the plane back home, reflecting on the gentle beauty of Nepal – as close as you can get to heaven.

Details.

5 – 14 March, 2021.
Spaces available

10 days. 9 nights. Starts and ends in Kathmandu, Nepal.

£2480 / £395 single supplement

Price includes 
9 days boutique accommodation at listed hotels, including breakfast
10 full days tuition from our UK-based professional photographer
Elephant & Jeep safaris in Chitwan National Park, with guide
Private photoshoots with the Kumari, Gurkhas & Everest Summiteers
All transfers to and from the airport
All transportation to shooting locations
All entrance fees to parks, monuments and temples
Boat ride on Phewa Lake
Multiple 1-on-1 tuition sessions

Price excludes flights, lunch and dinner.

 

There are no direct flights into Kathmandu. Fly into Dubai, Doha or Delhi, perfect for a few days explore – then it’s a short hop from there. Prices start at around £500.

"Quite simply one of the best things I have ever done."


Paul Goodhead, Manchester


cambodia photography holiday

Cambodia

CAMBODIA PHOTOGRAPHY HOLIDAYS  |  5 - 14 MARCH 2021  |  £2680

ANGKOR PHOTOGRAPHY TOURS CAMBODIA

Angkor has the grand scale of the Great Wall, the beauty of the Taj Mahal and the spatial symbolism of the pyramids, rolled into one. For buffs of any kind, its paradise.

Across ten galvanising days, our team use the backdrop of this UNESCO World Heritage site – and the fascinating hub of Siem Reap – to reveal the craft of stunning photography, with breathtaking results. And to soothe any creative angst, our Cambodia photography holiday workshop is held at one of Asia’s most renowned luxury hotels, a converted French governors mansion that melds Art Deco elements with modern chic for an atmosphere of sophisticated and discriminating splendour.

Experience old Asia in style.

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“This 10-day luxury photography retreat will teach you everything you need to know about accomplishing the perfect shot, in a jaw-dropping location. Enjoy one-to-one guidance with leading photographers, and test your new skills around the stunning temples of Angkor Wat. The company behind it, Creative Escapes, believes in expanding all horizons, and combines photography with diversions such as a tour of the local food market followed by a cooking lesson in Cambodian delicacies. Participants can keep up their skills afterward with alumni-only shoots that are held throughout the year.”

Highlights.

Diverse, awe-inspiring and quite magical. It’s unlike anywhere else on the planet. Our Cambodia photography holiday tour follows an opposite flow to other tourists, often finding we have entire temples to ourselves – and venture beyond the tourist eyes to NGO villages, behind the scenes at the local circus, and search out sea gypsies in situ – getting you closer – in private.

Throw in plush hotels, divine fooding and a people with such infectious charm you can’t help but fall in love with this sublime piece of old Asia.

Learn the craft of shooting thousand-year-old bas reliefs in beautiful light
Shoot in-situ portraits of circus performers, on stage and behind-the-scenes
Create timeless black-and-white images on the street and in the local market
Craft candid portraits in an NGO village, whilst on the ‘rice run’
Set-up a pop-up studio in the middle of a sea gypsy village, fronting the lake
Capture ‘atmosphere’ in a jungle-canopied temple, in dawn’s soft light
Shoot monks-in-training in Siem Reap’s stunning Wat Bo school

Itinerary.

Twenty minutes after touchdown on the first day of your Cambodia photography holiday, you’ll be reclining on your own balcony in the gardens of our chic retreat, letting all the stresses and strains fall away. This is FCC Angkor – a converted governors mansion meets modern hideaway – your home for the next 10 days shooting, adventure and relaxation.

We’ll start slow; taking our time with the basics of operating your camera (it’s really easy when you know how) – cracking aperture, shutter speed and ISO – then a quick trip out along the river to practice.

Come evening, sample some gastronomy at one of Asia’s best restaurants – Cuisine Wat Damnak – the £16, 5-course degustation is truly astonishing.

Next morning, we’ll go take our first peek at Angkor Wat, Cambodia’s most iconic temple. Literally ‘heaven on earth’, our guide will lead you on a grand tour of its bas reliefs, heavenly nymph carvings and majestic towers, letting you loose to shoot the first of your collection of jaw-dropping images (all monitored closely by our team of experts, of course).

We’ll return late afternoon, running through in non-techy speak which lenses suit which job, then grab a drink by the pool at happy hour, taking time to visit the Visaya Spa and get your complimentary foot rub, just to ease any last strains out of your body. Pure bliss.

Today, we’ll start by giving you some of the composition techniques the pros like to use (and like to keep secret), then try your hand at some documentary photography in the local Phsar Chas market, a short walk away in town. Here, locals buy goods from fish, to vegetables, to hairspray; you’ll get up close to the action and learn how to take images that really tell a story.

Later, we’ll review our hard days work under the stars and have your first 1-on-1 – your own personal time with your tutor to individually work on your skills.

Next morning, it’s off to Kompong Pluk, and board a hollowed-out canoe for a ride through a flooded forest of mangroves; once there you’ll capture some killer black-and-whites in this timeless gypsy village. That night, after our review of the day’s best, we’ll head to Miss Wong’s for a few lemongrass martinis – then head to our exclusive behind-the-scenes access at Phare, the Cambodian Circus.

It’s an early start this morning – but well worth the effort. Sunrise over Angkor Wat is quite magical; then afterwards, whilst all the tourists head home, we stay out, to the forest temple of Ta Prohm. Here, silk cotton trees have grown out of the ruins, in the lush surroundings of dawn-lit jungle. For one glorious hour, we’ll have the entire place to ourselves at this incredible temple; chance to create some softly lit landscapes you never thought you could take.

Then, before our afternoon snooze by the salt water pool, we’ll swing by Bayon – a multitude of serene, enormous stone faces of Buddha jutting out from the upper terrace.

The entire next day is your own; head into town or do absolutely marvelously nothing by the quiet, lapping pool. Later, we’ll take a walk over to Wat Bo – one of the town’s oldest temples. Here, you’ll witness the hypnotic effects of hundreds of chanting monks, plus a chance to shoot some too.

This morning, we’ll have a guided walk through a remote NGO village and chance to see the real rural Cambodia. Later, you’ll learn how to make traditional Cambodian cuisine in our pop-up cookery school right in the centre of the village, before sampling your fine dining in a traditional stilt pavilion. We then take part in some responsible tourism – and head out with some supplies for local families; chance to learn customs and beliefs within the village (and take some killer images).

Next day, we’ll delve into the secrets of portraiture, then shoot some of the temple guardians at Preah Khan, even stopping to find a secret chamber (hidden from most who pass by it) – once decorated with fist-sized rubies and emeralds on it’s bas-relief walls. This afternoon, our tutors will take you out individually, working with you to refine your style and further build your portfolio to take home. Later, we’ll dine above-ground in an 18th century old Cambodian house.

We then complete our 10-day odyssey with a final piece of work. Our team are on hand round- the-clock to offer support, assist with problem spots and provide comments, critiques or edits, then culminate in our final night pop-up exhibition. Over an apertif, we’ll view the incredible images that have been created, then have a sumptuous celebrationary dinner in our very own private open-air dining room.

On the final morning, we host our final 1-on-1 sessions with each of you, highlighting where we think your skills sit, some tips on things to try once home, plus some equipment suggestions that would fit your shooting style. Then, after a light lunch, we sadly say our farewells and exchange email addresses with new-found friends and creative collaborators, then board the plane back home.

Details.

5 – 14 March, 2021
Spaces available.

10 days. 9 nights. Starts and ends in Siem Reap, Cambodia.

£2680 / £395 single supplement

Price includes 
9 nights boutique accommodation at listed hotel, including breakfast
10 full days tuition from our UK-based professional photographer
4-day pass to Angkor Wat complex, with guide
Complimentary foot massage at the Visaya Spa
All transfers to and from the airport
All transportation to shooting locations
Backstage passes to Phare, the Cambodian Circus
Entrance to NGO village, with cookery class
Boat ride on Tonle Sap lake
Optional dawn helicopter flight over Angkor Wat
Multiple 1-on-1 tuition sessions

Price excludes flights, lunch and dinner.

 

There are no direct flights to Siem Reap from the UK. Fly into Bangkok, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur – perfect for a couple of days explore – then it’s a short hop from there. Flights start at around £500.

" Overall, I have come away from my Creative Escapes trip wanting to go on another one as soon as possible. It exceeded my expectations both in the course content and in what I actually learnt in such a short period of time. I think I'd like to try them all!"


Shakira Cassidy, Belfast